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Montauk is known by many Long Island residents as "The End." This is because it is the easternmost point of the island and New York state.
Montauk has a rich history. It is named after the Native American Montaukett tribe that fished, hunted, raised cattle, and lived on this land. Lord Gardiner, the first white man to settle here, made his way across the sound from Connecticut in 1639. King Charles I had granted him land. Gardiner became friendly with the Montauketts, especially the first known chief, Wyandanch.
In the 1700s, ranchers who grazed livestock on the Montauk peninsula paved Old Montauk Highway. The famous lighthouse that many visit today was ordered to be built by President George Washington in 1792. This was the first lighthouse to be built in New York and the fourth in the country. Montauk is also home to the first first cattle ranch in the United States, Deep Hollow Ranch. In the 18th century, eastern Long Islanders were not farmers, but strictly graziers. They often had permanent residents slightly more west on the island, and brought the cattle to Montauk for the warmer half of the year. This required homes to be built for these workers.
For many years, the famous First, Second, and Third Houses were the only residential buildings in the town. The First House was named that because it was simply the first house you reached when entering Montauk, Second House being the second, and Third House being the third. First House was built in 1744 across from Hither Hills State Park. The primary function of the grazier here was to enter all cattle onto the Common Pasture List and repair fences. Second House was built at the south end of Fort Pond in 1746. Here, the keeper looked after sheep. This house was This is now a museum run by the Montauk Historical Society. Third house was built in 1747 between Lake Montauk and Oyster Pond. This was the most extravagant and important house. Many wealthy workers stayed in this home encompassing a fireplace in every room. Third House keeper oversaw all cattle and made sure they remained in their proper fields. The headquarters for the County State Park is now in that same building.
In 1879, a man named Arthur Benson bought all of Montauk from the Native Americans for $151,000. In 1882, due to his contributions, the Stanford White houses were built. These are very large, extravagant homes with a renaissance style.
In 1895, Austin Corbin extended the Long Island Railroad from Sag Harbor to Montauk. The plan was to have Montauk be the main port for international trade.
The developer of Miami Beach, Carl Fisher, had a vision to make Montauk the Miami Beach of the North. He laid out the entire town, including the tall office building, the indoor tennis courts, the Yacht Club, the Surf Club, and gambling casino on Star Island. He is also responsible for placing the jetty in Lake Montauk, allowing the lake to be a saltwater harbor. The stock market crash of 1929 crushed some of his plans, but many accomplishments were still made and remain today.
During World War II, a large portion of Montauk was turned into a Navy base. A seaplane base was found at Fort Pond. Also, Camp Hero was established and disguised to appear as a New England fishing village from above.
In the 1960s, prefabricated "Leisurama" homes that you could purchase through Macy's department stores were built and sold in Montauk. These homes were completely furnished and even included as much as toothbrushes for the family. Also in the 1960s, as Montauk's popularity as a summer resort town continued to increase, many of the motels were built throughout town.
Today, Montauk still remains a very large tourist location and is home to the largest commercial and recreational fishing fleet in the state of New York. It boasts the claim that it has more saltwater fishing records than any other port in the world.
Montauk has a humid subtropical climate and is one of the northernmost locations in North America with this climate type. The Atlantic Ocean brings warmer winters than inland areas of the same latitude as well as cooler springs and summers. The monthly daily average temperature ranges from 32.3 °F (0.2 °C) in January to 72.4 °F (22.4 °C) in July. There is 43.6 inches of precipitation annually, which is fairly evenly distributed throughout the course of the year.
Montauk is easily accessible by car, by bus, by rail,and even by boat.
Taking a plane to New York is easy. There are three airports to chose from in the region. John F. Kennedy Airport (JKF) and LaGuardia Airport, both in Queens, and MacArthur Airport in Islip are all easily the first step to getting to Montauk.
Either travelling in your own car or by rental car it is easy to get out to "The End". The only road that goes out to seaside town is Sunrise Highway (or Route 27), which runs from New York City all the way to Montauk. Along the way Sunrise Highway turns into Montauk Highway yet it is still known as Route 27.
By Bus The Hampton Jitney bus service runs from Manhattan to Montauk. There are also local buses run by Suffolk from town to town.
The Long Island Railroad (LIRR) is an alternative to driving. It too runs from Penn Station in Manhattan to Montauk.
There are also places at which one can dock their boat and also ferries that run from other East End locations.
If one has their car, it can certainly come in handy to see and do everything one wants to in Montauk. If not, or if one has had one too many drinks, there are other alternatives.
Ditch Plains Taxi, 10 Sanger Place, ☎ (631) 668-5716
Lindy's Taxi, 717 Montauk Hwy, ☎ (631) 668-4747
Moko Taxi, 101 Industrial Road, ☎ (631) 668-7070
Montauk's Best Taxi, 11 Shore Road, ☎ (631) 668-5520
Surf Taxi, 414 W Lake Dr, ☎ (631) 668-1111
There is plenty to do in Montauk. It is renowned for its fishing and even claims to have the most saltwater fish records than any other port in the world. There are six state parks, the famed Montauk Point Lighthouse, and many restaurants, shops, and sights.
Beach Regulations: -Public parking at the beach is reserved for residence. Visitors can purchase a parking permit at Town Hall Annex at the Montauk Playhouse. -Dogs are not allowed on the beaches between 9am and 6pm from May 15 through the end of September. When permitted, dogs are allowed to run off leash. -Beach fires are permitted on most beaches however East Hampton Town has a list of regulations which must be followed.
Numerous specialty shops and markets line Main Street (Montauk Highway). It is here that you can find an array of fresh, local, and handmade goods.
Beach Apparel & Accessories
Numerous restaurants for every taste are in Montauk. There is an abundance of fresh, locally caught seafood markets, restaurants, and bars. No matter what it is that you are looking for, fine dining or a casual eatery, you can easily find it in Montauk.
Bars and lounges are all around Montauk. Local bars are often frequented by fisherman and tourists alike.
Montauk offers a wide array of hotels, bed & breakfast, and motels to accomodate all visitors. The interesting thing about Montauk is that you will not find any chain operated hotels or motels. This is because Southampton zoning laws forbid chain hotels. Therefore each hotel, motel, and bed & breakfast is independently owned and operated.
East Hampton Town Police Montauk Precinct ☎ 631-668-3709
Montauk Fire Department ☎ 631-668-2464
East Hampton Village Ambulance Calls ☎ 631-324-6868
Sag Harbor Ambulance Calls ☎ 631-725-0058
East Hampton Veterinary Group ☎ 631-324-0282
Long Island Power Authority ☎ 631-755-6900
Suffolk County Water Authority ☎ 631-288-1034
US Coast Guard, Montauk ☎ 631-668-2992
East Hampton Town Clerk Office ☎ 631-668-5081